Inspire Investment Solutions

Articles by Mike

Financial Lessons Learned....Maybe

       
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Off to College? This is a Must Sign

Getting your young adult child or even grandchild ready for his or her new life experience in higher education may be a hectic process.  Your thoughts may surround costs, dorm aesthetics, books, sports programs or a many other priorities.  However, a very important document that I believe parents and guardians should have their young one sign is a durable power of attorney and a health care proxy.  Once that child, in most states, reaches the age of 18, parents no longer have the
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New Year, Same Hysteria

Happy New Year to you and your family.  As I watch the recent stock market activity (better volatility) over the last couple of months, it strangely reminds me of playing recreational basketball.  Sometimes when I play basketball I like to step back and look at what is going on as if I had never played the game or watched it before.  In fact, most social interactions can seem alien in the same lens. But watching 10 men, especially those who are playing pick-up basketball, over the
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Interest Rates

July 2014How low interest rates will affect your retirementToday’s market environment has dramatically shifted from years past.  The Federal Reserve, in an effort to stimulate the economy and reel it back from the depths of disaster after the 2008 financial collapse, has shifted interest rates to historically low levels.  If you are a saver, or someone who does not like to take on risk, beyond investing in Treasury bills and notes and Certificates of Deposit (CDs), then you are w
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What Is Gold?

April 2014What is gold?  Why is it so sought after? What are the uses for investing?Think hard, try to remember back to your high school chemistry class.  What is the atomic symbol for gold? ……That’s right Au.  Au is derived from the Latin word aurum, meaning gold.  Atomic number? …You probably didn’t quite remember that one but it’s 79.  There are 79 protons at the nucleus of every gold atom.  Gold is one of the least reactive
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The Not So Simple IRA

June 2015What is gold?  Why is it so sought after? What are the uses for investing?For small companies that want to create a retirement plan for their employees a SIMPLE IRA can make a lot of sense. After all SIMPLE IRAs are easy to set up, do not require 5500 filing, or ownership testing. The SIMPLE IRA has some distinctions from a traditional 401(k) plan but works in a similar fashion. However, the SIMPLE IRA can get a bit murky when clients withdraw from their account. Ordinarily a
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While You Where Sleeping

While You Were Sleeping…Congress Messed with Your Social SecurityOn the morning of Monday, November 2nd, 2015 at 3am, a budget bill was signed into law, called the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015.  This Bill enacted without public hearings or much notice increased spending by $80 billion and raised the federal debt ceiling.  The United States continues to feast on debt that only future generations will have to deal with, but within the Bill some Social Security and Medicare recipi
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What Not To Do In 2016

With 2016 starting off as a rollercoaster ride for many investors, I thought it would be fitting to put into perspective some things that I have seen in my career and some of my thoughts about what investors should not be doing with their portfolios.1) DON’T be afraid of rising interest rates – people from every walk of life are telling you interest rates are moving higher. They are making you afraid of not refinancing your mortgage on time or not buying that house you have been look
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The Dangers of Using Your IRA for Immediate Expenses

Sometimes financial burdens can be overwhelming for an individual or family. There may be times when the only option seems like making a withdrawal from your Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Some qualified retirement accounts such as a 401(k) plan may allow for loans from the plan that are not taxable as long as they are repaid by the account owner. However an IRA does not have provision for loans. You are allowed to withdraw from an IRA without consequence as long as you repay the funds wit
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New Jersey Gas Tax

Governor Christie signed new tax legislation in October that made changes to not only the gas tax but also the estate and sales tax rates in the state of New Jersey. New Jersey was once the 49th ranked state in gasoline tax prior to this deal, after January 1st, 2017, they will be 4 th highest in the republic[1].But what gets lost in the outcry of the gas tax increase are the offsetting or let us say the coming of age estate tax limitations that go along with it in New Jersey. The increase in th
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What Volatility??

Many people think of a financial professional as someone who buys and sells stocks and bonds all day to make their clients' money. While this may still exist in certain companies, I can tell you it happens far less than even when I began my career in finance in 1999. As a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ much of my job is to coach client behavior and to set expectations. Much of the predictions that are truly important have nothing to do with their stock and bond portfolios. For example, i
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New Tax Law

It is important to note that this article is a high level over view of the tax law changes that take place January 1st, 2018 – December 31st, 2025.  After 2025, with some exceptions, these laws will revert back to the existing tax laws.  I encourage you to work with your tax professional to see how these changes will specifically impact you. Individual Tax Rates – Currently the top tax rate is 39.6%,that is being
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